Waters Ave. property to remain shopping center

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - What was supposed to be a new precinct for Savannah Chatham Metro officers, will now remain a shopping center.

During a city council workshop this morning, City Manager Rochelle Small-Toney suggested to city council members to abandon the new police precinct idea on the Waters Avenue property.  The city originally brought the property more than two years ago as part of the Water's Avenue improvement project, and the site has sat empty since. One of the current tenants even expanded their business. The city owns the property and has the right to move the current tenants, but are reluctant to do so, since there is not a not good alternative.

Small-Toney also noted that the structure itself had several issues in turning it into a police precinct.

Council will still have to vote on a suggestion of improving the property with landscaping and parking to the tune of over a million dollars.

They hope to lease the remaining property out and make a profit in the next five years. The city has made money on the property only leasing to 3 tenants in the last two years and expect to recoup the costs of improvements in 5 to 7 years if they fill the building with tenants.

This is not the first commercial property the city owns; it owns the Gamble Building next to city hall, where they lease space to tenants such as the Olympia Café.

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